Message of the Geese Shared during Christmas Season

Christmas float 2015This year’s brightly decorated Perry Wellness Center Christmas float didn’t win an award in the downtown Americus Christmas parade. But it conveyed its message colorfully to parade spectators. Its designer, local artist Jeff Williams, worked with his team on a truly inspirational entry. The single flying goose depicted on the float was its signature mascot and a long-time symbol for our recovery center.

“The story of the geese is important at Perry Wellness Center,” Jeff noted. “The staff and peer clients learn to develop leaders. If one individual – or goose—cannot continue to lead, they may drop back and another individual will move forward.”

During last week’s parade, a line of peers and staff followed the float through the streets of Americus. The lead truck and float had hay bales available as seating for those who could not follow the parade route on foot. The stretching line of followers served as a novel part of the geese motif, following the “lead goose.” One could almost imagine wings moving them forward during the parade.

For those who are not familiar with the Story of the Goose, here it is in its entirety:

"Next fall when you see geese heading south for the winter, flying in their familiar "V" formation, you might be interested in knowing why they fly that way. Science has learned that, as each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately behind it. By flying in a "V" formation, the flock together gains over 70% more flying range than if each bird flew on its own.

“Like the geese, people who share a common direction and a sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier, because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

“Whenever one goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone. It will quickly try to get back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the birds in front. If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay in formation with those who are headed the same way we are going.

“When the lead goose gets tired, it rotates back in the wing, and another goose takes over the point position. It pays to take turns doing hard jobs!

“The geese from behind honk constantly, as you've no doubt heard whenever a flock passes overhead. They do this to encourage those up front to keep up their speed. An encouraging word goes a long way.

“Finally, when a goose gets sick or is wounded by a gun shot and falls out of the formation, two geese follow it down to stay with it and protect it. They stay until it is either able to fly again, or dies. They then launch out on their own or with another formation to catch up with the group. If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other.

The author of this parable is unknown, but its message remains clear today. Stuart Perry summarizes its relevance to our place of work, learning, and healing: “It is important to learn that we work to teach leadership at Perry Wellness Center. We are a peer-run organization, and each of us relies on others to lead us to common goals.”

In the photo above, the Perry Wellness Center Christmas float makes its journey through downtown Americus.This year’s brightly decorated Perry Wellness Center Christmas float didn’t win an award in the downtown Americus Christmas parade. But it conveyed its message colorfully to parade spectators. Its designer, local artist Jeff Williams, worked with his team on a truly inspirational entry. The single flying goose depicted on the float was its signature mascot and a long-time symbol for our recovery center.

“The story of the geese is important at Perry Wellness Center,” Jeff noted. “The staff and peer clients learn to develop leaders. If one individual – or goose—cannot continue to lead, they may drop back and another individual will move forward.”

During last week’s parade, a line of peers and staff followed the float through the streets of Americus. The lead truck and float had hay bales available as seating for those who could not follow the parade route on foot. The stretching line of followers served as a novel part of the geese motif, following the “lead goose.” One could almost imagine wings moving them forward during the parade.

For those who are not familiar with the Story of the Goose, here it is in its entirety:

"Next fall when you see geese heading south for the winter, flying in their familiar "V" formation, you might be interested in knowing why they fly that way. Science has learned that, as each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately behind it. By flying in a "V" formation, the flock together gains over 70% more flying range than if each bird flew on its own.

“Like the geese, people who share a common direction and a sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier, because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

“Whenever one goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone. It will quickly try to get back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the birds in front. If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay in formation with those who are headed the same way we are going.

“When the lead goose gets tired, it rotates back in the wing, and another goose takes over the point position. It pays to take turns doing hard jobs!

“The geese from behind honk constantly, as you've no doubt heard whenever a flock passes overhead. They do this to encourage those up front to keep up their speed. An encouraging word goes a long way.

“Finally, when a goose gets sick or is wounded by a gun shot and falls out of the formation, two geese follow it down to stay with it and protect it. They stay until it is either able to fly again, or dies. They then launch out on their own or with another formation to catch up with the group. If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other.

The author of this parable is unknown, but its message remains clear today. Stuart Perry summarizes its relevance to our place of work, learning, and healing: “It is important to learn that we work to teach leadership at Perry Wellness Center. We are a peer-run organization, and each of us relies on others to lead us to common goals.”

In the photo above, the Perry Wellness Center Christmas float makes its journey through downtown Americus.

Wellness Center Hours

Mon-Fri 7:30 to 3

Happy Patch Market Hours

Mon-Sat 9 to 5:30

Perry Wellness Center | 302 E. Furlow St., Americus, GA 31709 map | 229-924-2430 | 

Login Form